Who's afraid of James Ashby?

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Ashbygate co-conspirator Karen Doane has gone to ground out of fears for her personal safety. Ross Jones considers who or what she might fear.

DoaneKaren Doane, James Ashby’s colleague and co-conspirator, has signed a statutory declaration alleging she fears at least one person wants to do her personal harm.

We know this, because the Federal electoral role shows Ms Doane’s residential address in Queensland’s Wide Bay electorate has been suppressed.

Now, the Australian Electoral Commission does not do this lightly. It takes more than a phone call or even a visit to the local Electoral Office — it requires a signed statutory declaration that you are in genuine fear for the physical safety for yourself or your close relatives before you can become a ‘silent elector’.

An elector must apply to the AEC, complete a Registration As A Silent Elector form and attach to this a statutory declaration compliant with the Statutory Declarations Act 1959. In other words, the person completing the declaration, in this case Ms Doane, agree they will be guilty of an offence under section 11of the Act if they state an untruth (make a false oath).

Ms Doane’s statutory declaration must have contained enough information for the AEC to grant this ‘silent enrolment’.

Is this a can of worms, or what?

We know there are some interesting characters around Mr Ashby and there are probably a lot more who had the brains not to text anyone even vaguely linked to him. We may never know about them — the unknown unknowns.

Could this be "Kojak"?
Could this be "Kojak"?[/caption]

We do know there is the delightfully named Kojak in the texts.

A bit before 8am on Friday 13 April 2012, PR flack Anthony McClellan texted Mr Ashby asking if he’d managed to deliver the ‘info’ to Kojak. Mr Ashby replied he was about to do just that. Kojak and info. Who the hell is called Kojak?

We know about Paul and Jacqueline Nagle who run the Yeppoon-based labour hire company Lacoa Workforce. We know Mr Nagle informed Mr Ashby he had made a secure copy of a file he assured Mr Ashby he had not opened.

Anonymous, where are you?

Paul Nagle provided Mr Ashby with the telephone number of Simon Mouatt who now runs Simon Mouatt & Associates, a company that promises small law firms they will ‘get your business motor running’.

Up to February 2012, Mr Mouatt was employed by the Department of Defence, most recently as Assistant Director Operations (Policy). Mr Mouatt signed up to the army as an enlisted man in May 1995 and saw operational service in East Timor. His online CV notes
Control and direction of 6 Pl to achieve operational outcomes, including command of isolated posts, long range patrols and interdiction operations against Militia groups operating in East Timor.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="100"] Simon Mouatt

At about 8.57 pm on Thursday 12 April 2012, Mr Mouatt sent a one word text to Mr Ashby – ‘Acknowledged’. A few minutes later he texted: ‘ETA 10.25’. Mr Ashby replied he thought this was ‘brilliant’.

For some reason, Mr Mouatt seems to have been Mr Ashby’s caddie for the evening, and a little after 11pm he texted proudly ‘I have you (sic) bags at the front’. Mr Ashby texted ‘Thanks so much Simon’. Mr Mouatt gallantly replied ‘my pleasure’.

These characters are just the tip of the known knowns. You know how the rest of the saying goes.

I am not suggesting in any way that any of the knowns might be implicated in Ms Doane’s fears, which might themselves be real or imagined.

I am suggesting the possibility this whole affair will end in tears has just gone up a notch.

(Read IA's full investigation into the James Ashby conspiracy by clicking here.)

Mal Brough moves in 2 doors down from Peter Slipper, January 2013.
Mal Brough moves in 2 doors down from Peter Slipper, January 2013.

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